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Saturday, March 17, 2018

Despite the Storms, New Plays New Jersey Delivers New Works to Audiences

Madison, NJ — While this month’s nor’easter forced cancelations in Writers Theatre of New Jersey’s annual New Plays New Jersey reading series, performances have been rescheduled and are back on track in Morristown and Madison over the next two weeks. Phoebe Farber’s “Psychodrama” and Suzanne Trauth’s “La Fonda” will be performed at The Bickford Theatre in Morristown, while Hal Corley’s “Nichiiwad” and Darrah Cloud’s “Turning” will be performed at Short Stories Bookshop and Community Hub in Madison. All four performances will begin at 7 PM and are part of the New Jersey Theatre Alliance Stages Festival.
The readings are presented by the individual theatres and feature plays from some of New Jersey’s best playwrights, directed by professional directors, and performed by professional New Jersey and New York actors.  Further, every reading is followed by a community discussion with the writer, director, and Writers Theatre Artistic Director, John Pietrowski, giving the audience opportunities to share their insights and opinions with the writer and to help further shape the work.

The series has been held at The Bickford Theatre for the past few years, but the rescheduling provided Writers Theatre the opportunity to hold half of the series at Short Stories, an important community hub in Madison, where Writers Theatre is based.

“We are very grateful to The Bickford Theatre at the Morris Museum for giving us the opportunity to present New Plays New Jersey, but The Morris Museum is a vibrant place, and with the number of plays we had to reschedule, we couldn’t fit all of them into their busy schedule,” said Writers Theatre’s Artistic Director John Pietrowski. “We’ve had a long, fruitful partnership with Short Stories Bookstore - another busy community resource - and we are just as grateful they could fit two plays into their busy schedule.”

The schedule for the series is as follows:

At the Bickford Theatre at the Morris Museum

6 Normandy Heights Rd, Morristown, NJ:

Sunday, March 18th at 7 PM - "Psychodrama" by Phoebe Farber

Friday, March 30th at 7 PM - "La Fonda" by Suzanne Trauth

At Short Stories Bookshop and Community Hub

23 Main Street, Madison, NJ:

Sunday, March 25th at 7 PM - "Nichiiwad" by Hal Corley

Saturday, March 31st at 7 PM - "Turning"  by Darrah Cloud
Readings are free of charge, with a $10 recommended donation (or donate what you can).

Additionally, Writers Theatre is continuing its partnership with the Jersey City Theater Center and Mile Square Theatre in Hoboken to present a series of readings during March. The remaining readings in those two series are:

Jersey City Theatre Center
339 Newark Avenue, Jersey City, NJ:

Wednesday, March 21 at 7:30 PM  - "Wish Bone" by Phoebe Farber 

Wednesday, March 28 at 7:30 PM  - "Pushing the River" by Rosemary McLaughlin  

Mile Square Theatre
1400 Clinton St, Hoboken, NJ

Tuesday, March 20  at 7:30 PM  - "The Forest" by Lia Romeo

Tuesday, March 27  at 7:30 PM  - "The Other White Meat" by Erin Mallon

A 7-Play Pass is available for $25 here.

New Plays New Jersey and the reading series in Jersey City and Hoboken are presented as part of the New Jersey Theatre Alliance’s annual Stages Festival, a celebration of theatre which brings free and low-cost performances to the state's audiences every March. For more information on the Stages Festival and to see all the events happening in your area as part of this year’s Festival, click here.

For more information on any of Writers Theatre’s programs, please visit or contact Writers Theatre at P.O. Box 1295, Madison, NJ, 07940, 973-514-1787 x20 or
About Writers Theatre of New Jersey:
Writers Theatre is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit, professional (Actors’ Equity) theatre and a community of professional playwrights, theatre artists, and arts educators that provides opportunities for writers to develop their works in a nurturing environment and connect with new audiences. Our New Play Development Program is a multi-step process through which playwrights, theatre artists, and audiences collaborate to bring selected texts from rough draft to finished production.
Our Education Programs introduce students of all ages and backgrounds to the possibilities inherent in thinking and communicating creatively. Writers Theatre’s New Jersey Writers Project provides hands-on workshops led by professional writers-in-residence to students in schools and community centers throughout the state. We place an equal emphasis on Development and Educational activities, and encourage our community and audiences to participate fully in both.

We are honored that, every year since 2003, the New Jersey State Council on the Arts (NJSCA) has designated Writers Theatre as a Major Arts Institution. This means that the Council considers Writers Theatre to be “an anchor institution that contributes vitally to the quality of life in New Jersey.”
Funding for our activities comes from: the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, the F.M. Kirby Foundation, Inc., Dramatist Guild Fund, Horizon Foundation of New Jersey, The Shubert Foundation, The Victoria Foundation, and many corporations, foundations and individuals.

Friday, March 16, 2018

2B or Not 2: An Actress/Teacher Learns From Her Students

An aspiring but out-of-work actress takes a job as theater teacher and discovers a surprising truth: the real world of her students was far more engaging than the world of the classic characters she wanted to play.
Jersey City Theater Center (JCTC) continues its Truth series with 2B or Not 2  – Friday, March 23 at 8:00pm, Merseles Studios, 339 Newark Avenue, Jersey City, NJ 07302. (Doors open at 7:30, come early and enjoy the Truth Art Show in the gallery at Merseles Studios).
Written and performed by Anne Pasquale and directed by Sondra Lee, 2B or Not 2 is based on Pasquale’s own experience as a teaching artist. In the early 2000’s she moved from Rhode Island to New York City determined to become a successful actress. In order to make ends meet – and avoid admitting defeat and moving back home – she becomes a teaching artist. Her job requires her to visit schools – from pre-K  to High School – and teach all aspects of theatre: from acting and directing to stage design and scenery construction with the students.

As she meets more students, hears their stories and finds out about their lives, she realizes that being involved with youth is more fulfilling than the more typical theatre career she originally sought. Pasquale has worked in hundreds of schools, including many in New Jersey. She has worked with Living History Programs and in 2009 received the Roster Artist of the Year Award from Young Audiences New York. In 2B or Not 2, Pasquale portrays more than 20 characters in her comic yet poignant solo-show, which was workshopped at the prestigious Polaris North, a New York theatre cooperative.

2B or Not 2 premiered at the Midtown International Theatre Festival last year, and the JCTC presentation is the New Jersey debut.  While the play documents her unusual career path, at its core are the lives of the students she encounters.
“Many of the stories based on the  experiences I had working in schools throughout northern New Jersey, so I am excited to begin the next phase of the play in New Jersey because so much of the play was inspired by the students I met here,” said Pasquale. “This show is for anyone who loves children, who has ever been a child and who is fascinated by their everyday stories of disaster and hope. As an actress, I've yet to play Tatiana but every day I get up and have the privilege of working, with some of the most creative minds on the planet, children.”
“This play about how sometimes our greatest successes come when we set out to do something else,” said Sondra Lee, director of 2B or Not 2.
Pasquale, who was trained at L.A.M.D.A. and the New York School of the Arts, has most recently appeared in the Gallery Players’ premiere of The Altruist by TJ Edwards and All the Best Ingredients by James Bosley. She also played Serafina Della Rosa in The Rose Tattoo in her own original compilation – Tennessee Williams, the Writer and His World – at the Accidental Repertory Theatre under the direction of John Strasberg.
Lee –  an Award winning dancer, actress and director –   was the original Tiger Lily in Peter Pan on Broadway (1954), a role which endeared her to millions when it aired nation and worldwide on television in 1960. Sondra acted in many plays, operas and movies, created the role of Minnie Fay in Hello, Dolly!, and danced in Jerome Robbins’ Ballet: U.S.A Her film roles range from La Dolce Vita to The Last of the Mohicans. Born in Newark, N.J., Lee authored I Slept with Everybody (2009), an insightful and entertaining memoir about her life as an actress and dancer.
Jersey City Theater Center presents:
2b or Not 2
Friday, March 23 at 8:00pm
Merseles Studios  
339 Newark Ave. 
Jersey City, NJ 07302

Tickets: $$20 ($15 for students & senior citizens/photo ID required at door).
To purchase tickets, visit:

‘TRYING’ opening at George Street Playhouse



March 13 - April 8, 2018

Opening Night: Friday, March16, 2018

by Joanna McClelland Glass

directed by Jim Jack

with Philip Goodwin and Carly Zien

Trying GSP 3-18  071Trying, by Joanna McClelland Glass, directed by Jim Jack  at George Street Playhouse 3/11/18Set Design: Jason SimmsCostume Design: Esther ArroyoLighting Design: Christopher J. BaileyPhoto Credit: T Charles Erickson© T Charles Erickson

Set Design by Jason Simms
Costume Design by Esther Arroyo
Lighting Design by Christopher J. Bailey
Composer/Sound Designer Scott Killian

Production Manager Christopher J. Bailey
Production Stage Manager Jane Pole
Casting by McCorkle Casting, Ltd.

About the Play
Internationally known Francis Biddle, Chief Judge of the Nuremberg trials, opponent of the Japanese internment camps during World War II, and Attorney General under President Franklin D. Roosevelt, is 81 years old, elegant, sharply cantankerous, and trying to put his life in order. When a young, new secretary is hired, the two struggle to communicate but come to understand how two strangers at very different places in their lives can unexpectedly and forever influence each other. Based on playwright Joanna McClelland Glass’ real-life experience as Biddle's secretary.

Trying is this season's GSP Book Club selection.

For tickets, call 732-246-7717 or visit

Trying is sponsored by The Blanche and Irving Laurie Foundation.

About George Street Playhouse With its longtime venue in downtown New Brunswick razed to make way for a new performing arts center that will serve as George Street Playhouse’s future home, the Playhouse has taken residence in the former New Jersey Museum of Agriculture at 103 College Farm Road on Rutgers University’s Cook Campus through its 2018-19 season. George Street Playhouse is expected to return downtown to the New Brunswick Performing Arts Center in time for its 2019-20 season.

Visit GSP's website (, which allows patrons to select their own seating locations when ordering tickets online. Located right off Route 1 amidst a vast bucolic setting on the Cook Campus of Rutgers University, George Street Playhouse’s new, interim venue features expansive lobby spaces, an outdoor patio and free nearby parking. The entrance into the building and to all areas of the theatre are barrier-free. For directions to George Street Playhouse, visit the Playhouse website ( and click Directions on the homepage.

New Brunswick’s favorite restaurants are less than two miles from College Farm Road. For a list of restaurants, visit the Plan Your Visit section of the website. And keep a lookout for unique dining options offered by George Street Playhouse.


Photo by T. Charles Erickson

JONATHAN KITE (TV’s 2 Broke Girls) leads the cast of The Nerd At George Street Playhouse

George Street Playhouse, located at 103 College Farm Road in New Brunswick, today announced Jonathan Kite (TV’s 2 Broke Girls) will play the titular role in Larry Shue’s The Nerd, on stage April 24 - May 20, 2018. Kevin Cahoon, who has appeared in many Broadway productions, including The Wedding Singer and The Lion King, will direct the popular comedy, which closes out GSP’s mainstage season.

JonathanKite_72dpiJonathan Kite (Rick) is best known as Oleg, the hilarious, sex-crazed Ukrainian cook opposite Kat Dennings and Beth Behrs in the CBS comedy hit 2 Broke Girls. Kite appeared in more than 100 episodes of the Emmy Award-nominated comedy.  

Kite also does voice work for animated series, such as Adult Swim’s Black Dynamite, and FOX’s Family Guy and American Dad. He is an expert impressionist, boasting over 100 celebrity impressions that include: Vince Vaughn, Tom Hanks, Seth Rogen, Liam Neeson, Christian Bale, Jeff Bridges, Robert Downey Jr., and John Lithgow. Kite has also studied improvisation and sketch comedy with Chicago's Second City and The Groundlings in Los Angeles.

Additional casting and creative team will be announced soon.
The Nerd takes place during Willum’s birthday party, which gets a jolt of hilarious excitement when Rick Steadman (Kite), a fellow ex-soldier who saved Willum's life, stops by for a visit. Upon realizing that Rick will overstay his welcome with a vengeance, Willum puts together an outrageous plan to rid himself of this wacky GI who came to dinner. It’s a rollicking farce from the author of the award-winning comedy The Foreigner.

Kevin Cahoon (Director) has directed numerous productions for the Bay Area Houston Ballet and Theatre (Jete Society Award Honoree), developmental productions at NYC’s Ars Nova Theatre, productions for the comedy duo Tastiskank ( Aspen Comedy Festival Breakout Award Winner), and recently, the New York Theatre Workshop Spring Gala starring Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Rachel Dratch, and Patti LuPone. After making his Broadway debut as an actor in The Who’s Tommy, he originated roles in the Broadway productions of The Wedding Singer, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang,The Lion King, and the revival of The Rocky Horror Show. His Off Broadway credits include Hedwig and the Angry Inch (also Boston, San Francisco,The Edinburgh Festival), How I Learned to Drive (Second Stage Theatre), The Shaggs: Philosophy of The World (Playwrights Horizons), The Foreigner (Roundabout Theatre Company, Lucille Lortel Award nomination), The Wild Party (Manhattan Theatre Club), and Hair and Babes in Arms (City Center Encores!).

Larry Shue (Playwright) was the author of The Nerd, which ran successfully on Broadway with a National Tour and many productions overseas. His play Wenceslas Square was performed off-Broadway at the New York Shakespeare Festival. Wenceslas Square is part of Best Play of 1987-1988, published by Dodd, Mead and Company. He also wrote The Foreigner, which, following a record-breaking run of 700 performances at New York’s Astor Place Theatre, was produced successfully internationally.

Tickets start at $44 for Preview performances. Student tickets are $15. To purchase tickets or for more information, visit the George Street Playhouse website, or call the box office at 732-246-7717.  Groups of 10 more receive additional discounts.  For information about bringing a group to the Playhouse, call 732-846-2895 ext. 134, or visit

unnamed (1)With its longtime venue in downtown New Brunswick razed to make way for a new performing arts center that will serve as George Street Playhouse’s future home, the Playhouse has taken residence in the former New Jersey Museum of Agriculture at 103 College Farm Road on Rutgers University’s Cook Campus through its 2018-19 season. George Street Playhouse is expected to return downtown to the New Brunswick Performing Arts Center for its 2019-20 season. A former museum exhibit area has been transformed into an intimate, mainstage theatre space.

Located right off Route 1 amidst a vast bucolic setting on the Cook Campus of Rutgers University, George Street Playhouse’s new, interim venue features expansive lobby spaces, an outdoor patio and free nearby parking. The entrance into the building and to all areas of the theatre are barrier-free. For directions to George Street Playhouse, visit the Playhouse website ( and click Directions on the homepage.

‘Healing Voices On Stage’ a Stages Festival Event

The Stages Festival blue and green logo featured event

Healing Voices Onstage: Caregivers' Stories

Friday, March 23 at 7:00pm, reception at 6:00pm
Bickford Theatre at the Morris Museum
Join the New Jersey Theatre Alliance, Premiere Stages, and Writers Theatre of New Jersey for a free evening of theatre highlighting the caregiving experience. Now in its third year at the Bickford Theatre, the project weaves together short works of prose, poetry, and dramatic monologues/scenes by personal and professional caregivers into an original theatrical piece, and has expanded to incorporate submissions by those receiving care as well as providing it.
This event is free and open to the public, but reservations are encouraged.
Please RSVP by March 20.
Please join us before the performance for light refreshments.
This event is FREE but reservations are recommended.
"Healing Voices OnStage: Caregivers' Stories" is made possible in part by funding from Atlantic Health System.

‘Venus in Fur’ now at Chester Theatre Group

By David Ives
Directed by Stephen Catron

March 16, 17, 23, 24 at 8:00 PM
March 17, 25 at 2:00 PM

Mature Content and Language. Not suitable for children under 16.

Playwright Thomas Novachek is at a loss. There are no actresses talented enough to play his leading lady. Then in walks Vanda, a mysterious actress with the uncanny ability to inhabit his character. The audition quickly escalates into a seductive power play. With humor and a hint of the erotic, Venus in Fur keeps you on the edge of your seat as you question "who is really in charge here?"

CTG Black Box Productions present titles that wouldn’t normally be included in our regular season. By giving audiences, actors and directors a venue for smaller, off-beat plays that do not rely on larger sets, elaborate costumes, or similar production values, we hope to offer something different for those that appreciate the unusual.

Joseph Guadara as Thomas Novachek
Sky Spiegel Monroe as Vanda Jordan
Photo: Daily Record  Read Story
Creative Team
Stephen Catron

Ellen Fraker-Glasscock

Stage Manager
Karen Catron

Lighting/Sound Operation
Lauri MacMillan

54 Grove Street (at the corner of Maple Avenue), Chester, NJ 07930 • 908-879-7304 •

Thursday, March 15, 2018


ATWW 2_5x7

A bevy of songs from some of Broadway's Tony Award-winning musicals will light up the Bergen County Players' (BCP) stage March 24 through April 21, with the curtain at 8 pm on Fridays and Saturdays and 2 pm on Sundays. There will be extra matinees on April 14 and 21, and no shows March 30, 31 and April 1.
All performances will take place at the Little Firehouse Theater, 298
Kinderkamack Road in Oradell. Tickets may be purchased online at, by calling 201-261-4200 or by visiting the box
office during regular box office hours.

An original revue of song and dance, And The Winner Was...celebrates
past and present hit shows, from the acclaimed A Gentleman's Guide to Love and Murder to old favorites like The Music Man and Kiss Me Kate. Over thirty songs from shows that were recipients of Broadway’s highest honors
will be performed by a talented cast of singer/dancer/actors,
including favorites such as “Cabaret” from Cabaret, “Luck Be a Lady”
from Guys and Dolls, “Send in the Clowns” from A Little Night Music,
“Heart” from Damn Yankees and “What I Did for Love” from A Chorus Line.
Conceived and directed by Ray Yucis, the show is under the imaginative
musical direction of Ann Crawford, with the cast performing a tour of
Broadway history in a cabaret-like setting.

The cast features BCP veterans Staci Beth Block of Hackensack, Joe
DiBartolo of Wanaque, Sarah A. Feinmark of Haworth, Nancy Feldman of
New City, NY, Tim and Megan Larsen of Hackensack and Bryan John Morris
of New Milford, along with newcomers Tara Hutchison of Hillsdale, Kay
Koch of Hackensack and Bryan Luterman of Leonia.

The crew of And the Winner Was...includes Ray Yucis (Director), Lynne Lupfer (Producer), Ann Crawford (Musical Director), Geri Berhain (Assistant to the Director & Stage Manager), Jody Laufer (Set Construction), Lynne
Lupfer (Decor) Joe Lanteri (Lighting Design & Operation), Tim Larsen
(Sound Design), David Luke (Sound Operation), Bunny Mateosian
(Costumes), Marisa Dolkart and Melissa Miller (Make-up and Hair),
Darlene Slezak and Ken Slezak (Crew), Celeste Fasone (Publicity) Marci
K. Weinstein (Program Notes), Barbara Mintz and Steve Mintz
(Photography) and Eileen Winkler (Member-at-Large).

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

37th Annual Black Maria Film Festival at Centenary Stage Company


Centenary University will be hosting a free screening of the 37th Annual Black Maria Film Festival in the Sitnik Theater of the Lackland Performing Arts Center located at 715 Grand Avenue, Hackettstown NJ on Wednesday, March 21 at 7:30PM. No reservations required.

Since 1981, the Black Maria Film Festival has been celebrating and preserving the diversity, invention, and vitality of the short film The Festival’s home is New Jersey City University in Jersey City, NJ and is named as Thomas Edison’s original West Orange film studio dubbed the “Black Maria” because of its resemblance to the black-box police paddy wagons of the same name.

Black Maria is an international juried film competition who has embraced their mission for 37 years by focusing on short films including those, which shine a light on issues and struggles within contemporary society. Black Maria’s touring programs always include provocative works. They advance and exhibit the work of diverse filmmakers from across the US and around the world. These artists often represent an under-served constituency who might not otherwise have the opportunity for live public exhibition nationwide or abroad.

For more information contact Boris Gavrilovic, Assistant Professor of Communications-Centenary University at (908) 852-1400 x2256.

The annual 37th free screening of the Black Maria Film Festival at Centenary University is made possible by the generous support from the Warren County Cultural Heritage Commission.

Auditions: TONIGHT 'Appropriate' at Studio Playhouse in Montclair

Audition Notice for today Wednesday 3/14 at 7:30
for Brundage Park Playhouse - The Community Theater of Randolph, NJ

at Studio Playhouse, Montclair NJ

Appropriate by Branden Jacobs-Jenkins

Rhys Thurston, Male, 18-25, Caucasian, plays 17, Toni’s son. Born and raised in Atlanta, GA, he recently got into trouble and is about to go off and live with his father.

Performance Dates: May 11, 12, 13, 17, 18, 19, 20, 24, 25, 26

If interested please contact the Stage Manager Kevin at
For more information.

Paper Mill Playhouse Wins TWO People’s Choice Awards


Paper Mill Playhouse is most honored organization in the award’s ten-year history

Paper Mill Playhouse (Mark S. Hoebee-Producing Artistic Director, Todd Schmidt-Managing Director), recipient of the 2016 Regional Theatre Tony Award, is pleased to announce it has won two, 2018 Discover Jersey Arts People’s Choice Awards.  Paper Mill Playhouse was awarded, “Favorite Theater at See a Musical,” and “Favorite Choral Group” by the ArtPride New Jersey Foundation. Presented by Discover Jersey Arts, a program of the ArtPride New Jersey Foundation and New Jersey State Council on the Arts, the annual Awards highlight the work of New Jersey’s vital and diverse arts community.

The awards presented to Paper Mill Playhouse were accepted by Producing Artistic Director, Mark S. Hoebee.  “We’re so grateful for this designation and to be among the top arts organizations in the state,” said Hoebee. “We are thankful for the outpouring of support from the community that we serve and thrilled we were chosen as New Jersey’s ‘Favorite Place to see a Musical’. We are overjoyed to receive an award for the Paper Mill Playhouse Broadway Show Choir. Programs like our show choir, Theatre School, classes for students with autism and other developmental disabilities and our Summer Musical Theatre Conservatory give students a supportive environment in which to study and explore elements of performance and learn essential life skills.”

This year, more than 18,000 arts lovers cast their ballots for their favorite local groups and downtowns. Paper Mill Playhouse garnered over 10,000 votes between the two categories and was amongst those honored this morning at ArtPride New Jersey’s headquarters at Lyceum Hall Center for the Arts in Burlington, N.J.

aapmpPaper Mill Playhouse, recipient of the 2016 Regional Theatre Tony Award, is where American musical theater is celebrated, cherished, and pushed in exciting new directions. A beloved New Jersey arts institution since 1938 and a nationally renowned not-for-profit regional theater, Paper Mill has been consistently recognized for the high-quality artistry of its reimagined classic musicals as well as its commitment to supporting the development of new works and the careers of Broadway’s best talent and emerging artists both onstage and behind the scenes. Paper Mill Playhouse boasts award-winning access services and outreach initiatives as well as performer training programs that impact more than 35,000 students each year. Paper Mill Playhouse productions have launched national tours and gone on to Broadway—including Disney’s Newsies, Les Misérables, Honeymoon in Vegas, A Bronx Tale, and Bandstand—as well as television broadcasts on Showtime and PBS and original cast recordings. Paper Mill Playhouse is a member of the National Alliance for Musical Theatre, the Council of Stock Theatres, and the New Jersey Theatre Alliance. For more information, please

Show Choir gifThe Paper Mill Playhouse Broadway Show Choir is a tuition-free, audition-based performance show choir that stems from Paper Mill Playhouse’s award-winning Arts Education and Outreach programs.  The choir consists of 60 singer/dancers between the ages of 15 and 22. The Paper Mill Playhouse Broadway Show Choir acts as ambassadors to Paper Mill Playhouse with an array of performance opportunities throughout the community and beyond. Over the past five seasons, the Paper Mill Playhouse Broadway Show Choir has delighted more than 350,000 people across the region with rousing renditions of Broadway, pop and classics. The choir has performed at prestigious venues including MetLife Stadium, Lincoln Center, Sun Arena, NJPAC, The State Theatre, Mayo Center, Bergen PAC, Paper Mill Playhouse, The Empire State Building, Asbury Park Convention Center, SOPAC, among others. This January, the show choir performed with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra for their Sci-Fi Spectacular. The choir will be on-tour throughout the state, April through June.  The Paper Mill Playhouse Broadway Show Choir is presented by Overlook Medical Center. For more information or tour schedule visit

‘Hitler’s Tasters’ world premiere at Centenary Stage Company


Imagine knowing that every mouthful of food you ate could be your last. Inspired by the true story, Michelle Kholos Brooks’ Hitler’s Tasters will make its world premiere at Centenary Stage Company April 6 through April 22 in the Lackland Performing Arts Center.

Winner of the 2017 Susan Glaspell Award, this alternately engaging and compelling play tells the story of the young women who were charged with tasting Hitler’s food so that he would not be poisoned. Three times day, every day, the young women have the opportunity “to die for their Führer”. But while they wait, like all girls throughout time, they gossip, they dream, they question and dance, until the door opens and the guard appears with each meal. 

Michelle Kholos Brooks’ plays have been produced and seen from coast to coast at theatres in such as the Pacific Resident Theatre, the Adirondack Theatre Festival, Wings Theatre (NYC), Laurelgrove Theatere Co. (Los Angeles), and the Vox Humana Theatre Ensemble, among many others.  Brooks earned a B.A. from Emerson College and an M.F.A. in Fiction from Otis College of Art and Design. She is a member of The Dramatists Guild of America and Pacific Resident Theatre in Los Angeles, CA. She lives in Venice, California with her husband and son.

The production will be directed by Sarah Norris. Her work has been seen both around the country (New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Fresno, Las Vegas, Minneapolis, Maine & Alaska) and around the world (Australia, England, & Ireland). In New York, she has worked with: Playwrights Horizons, LAByrinth Theater Company, Disney Theatrical Productions, BAMA Theatre Company, The Flea Theater, The Gallery Players, The Glass Eye/Fresh Produce’d, and Boomerang Theatre to name a few.  She is the Founding Artistic Director of New Light Theater Project and is the newly appointed Artistic Director of Access Theater, a downtown producing and curated arts venue for the Off-Broadway theater community.

Hitler’s Tasters runs April 6 through April 22 in the Kutz Theatre of the Lackland Performing Arts Center. Specific performance dates are; Fridays April 6, 13 and 20 at 8pm; Saturdays April 7, 14 and 21 at 8pm; Sundays April 8, 15 and 22 at 2pm; Wednesdays, April 11 and 18 at 2pm and Thursdays, April 12 and 19 at 7:30pm. Tickets are $27.50 for adults on matinee and Friday evening performances and $29.50 for adults on Saturday evening performances. Thursday evening performances are $27.50 for all seats with a buy one / get one rush ticket special when purchased in person at the Centenary Stage Company box office beginning at 5:30pm.  BOGO offer is not valid for advance ticket sales by phone or online.  Centenary Stage Company is also offering a buffet matinee for both Wednesday afternoon performances. Buffet matinees are $45.00 per person and include private dining and the performance. Minimum of 25 reservations are required. Centenary Stage Company also offers discounted group sales for groups of 25 or more. To reserve a buffet matinee or a group of 25 or more contact the CSC box office directly at (908) 979 – 0900.

Centenary Stage Company will also be holding a Pre-show VIP Reception on Saturday, April 7 beginning at 6:30PM. The reception is $15.00 per person and limited to 50 participants. The Pre-show VIP reception will include light finger food, complimentary beverages, deserts and an opportunity to meet playwright Michelle Kholos Brooks. It is recommended to purchase tickets along with your VIP Reception reservation to ensure entry to the performance that evening.  To reserve call the box office directly at (908) 979 – 0900.

Auditions: A Midsummer Dance Intensive at Axelrod Contemporary Ballet Theater

Axelrod Contemporary Ballet Theater announces auditions for its “A Midsummer Dance Intensive” on Sunday, March 18 at 2 PM at the Axelrod Performing Arts Center, 100 Grant Avenue, Deal Park, NJ.  Open to dancers ages 10-21.
For more information and to register for the audition, please email Wendy Roman, company coordinator, at The audition will consist of a short Ballet/Pointe or Jazz/Contemporary/Modern solo (less than 2 minutes).
A Midsummer Dance Intensive is a 14-day program, August 13-30, which meets five days a week for six hours a day.  This summer program is designed for young dancers interested in taking their artistic abilities to the next level under the tutelage of choreographer and director Gabriel Chajnik and visiting master teachers. Tuition: $1,200. Scholarships available.
The summer program culminates with a full-length production of “A Midsummer Night's Dream” on Thursday, August 30 at 8:00 p.m. The participating Dance Intensive students will perform alongside the professional company members of the Axelrod Contemporary Ballet Theatre, accompanied by live musicians. The multi-media performance will integrate different styles of dance from Ballet and Pointe to Contemporary and Modern on the spacious stage at the Axelrod Performing Arts Center.

About Gabriel Chajnik
The founding director of the new Axelrod Contemporary Ballet Theater, Gabriel Chajnik was trained under the tutelage of Maestro Hector Zaraspe and is an alumnus of the Juilliard School.
Chajnik is a former dancer with American Repertory Ballet. His teaching credits expand from Argentina to Europe and the United States at Brooklyn Music School, Princeton Ballet, the Academy of Dance Arts and Gotta Dance in New Jersey. Gabriel’s work has been featured at Juilliard, the Manhattan School of Music, the Shakespeare Theater in Washington, D.C., Alice Tully Hall, the Clark Theater at Lincoln Center, MMAC, and the Lambs Theater.
Chajnik is also the Artistic Director for TranscenDanceGroup, whose TDG Holocaust Awareness performance has reached school students throughout the tri-state area. Chajnik has been honored by the Jewish Federation of Somerset, Hunterdon, & Warren Counties.

The Axelrod Performing Arts Center fosters artistic excellence by showcasing varied and distinct cultural programs that enrich the imaginative, intellectual, and creative soul, while cultivating an appreciation of diverse communities through the pursuit of the arts. For more information, please visit

Broadway, film and TV star Jason Alexander headlines performances of song and comedy with the NJSO

jason alexander

World renowned as George Costanza on ‘Seinfeld,’ the Tony Award winner sings and retells his journey to and on the Broadway stage

Spring into Music Gala is Apr 14 at NJPAC in Newark

State Theatre New Jersey co-presents New Brunswick performance

Sat, Apr 14, at NJPAC in Newark

Sun, Apr 15, at State Theatre New Jersey in New Brunswick

NEWARK, NJ—Tony Award-winning Broadway, film and television star Jason Alexander—world renowned as the iconic George Costanza on “Seinfeld”—headlines performances of song and comedy with the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra, April 14–15 in Newark and New Brunswick.

The award-winning Broadway song-and-dance man’s concerts with the Orchestra bring a hilarious re-telling of his journey to and on the Broadway stage, featuring a program of great music from the theater along with comedy and audience interaction.

Performances take place on Saturday, April 14, at 8 pm at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark and Sunday, April 15, at 3 pm at State Theatre New Jersey in New Brunswick. State Theatre New Jersey co-presents the April 15 performance.

Alexander has won praise for his orchestral performances. The Star-Telegram writes: “Alexander not only has an exceptional voice and a thoroughly honed gift for selling a song, but he can also be surprisingly light on his feet and work a room with an ease that any standup comedian would envy.”

A highlight of the orchestral program is a medley of Bruce Springsteen hits that the NJSO debuted at parks concerts last summer.

At free NJSO Accent events before each concert, audiences can enjoy a performance from Casual Harmony, Rutgers University’s award-winning all-male a cappella group.

The NJSO’s annual Spring into Music Gala at NJPAC includes the April 14 performance, plus pre-concert cocktails, dinner and a silent auction.


Jason Alexander: The Broadway Boy

Sat, Apr 14, at 8 pm | NJPAC in Newark

Sun, Apr 15, at 3 pm | State Theatre New Jersey in New Brunswick

Jason Alexander

Bob Bernhardt, conductor

New Jersey Symphony Orchestra


Prelude Performance—Sat, Apr 14 at 7 pm and Sun, Apr 15 at 2 pm
It’s Pitch Perfect come to life! Enjoy an entertaining pre-concert set from Casual Harmony, Rutgers University’s award-winning all-male a cappellagroup.

The April 15 performance is presented in collaboration with State Theatre New Jersey.

Full concert information is available at


The Orchestra hosts its 2018 Spring into Music Gala on Saturday, April 14, at NJPAC in Newark. Gala ticket packages include the NJSO performance, plus pre-concert cocktails, dinner and a silent auction. The gala’s honoree is Merck & Co., Inc., Chairman of the Board and CEO Kenneth C. Frazier.

More information about the gala event is available at

The NJSO gratefully acknowledges honoree sponsor Merck & Co., Inc., and dinner sponsor Northern Trust.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

50 Years After Martin Luther King’s Death, The Theater Project Commemorates his Life’s Work with THE BEST OF ENEMIES – a true story.


As America celebrates Martin Luther King’s life half a century after his assassination on April 4, 1968, The Theater Project commemorates this milestone with THE BEST OF ENEMIES, a play that begins on the night of Dr. King’s death. Two people in the same city but worlds apart – a black civil rights activist and a Ku Klux Klan leader – react to the news of the assassination in shocking but predictably different ways.

A TRUE STORY: Flash forward three years to 1971 in this true story, when an ambitious young community organizer decides that the only way to move Durham, North Carolina’s deeply segregated schools closer to Martin Luther King’s vision of integrated, equal education is to bring these two bitter enemies together on the same school board committee: Ann Atwater, the black activist, and C.P. Ellis, the local KKK leader, are locked in a fierce struggle that forces them both to confront the worst and best in each other and themselves.

“It’s tempting to think of the Ku Klux Klan as a relic from the past, but recent events in Charlottesville and elsewhere remind us that the issues of racism explored in this play are very much with us, and need to be examined and addressed,” said Mark Spina, Theater Project Artistic Director.

Mark St. Germain’s play THE BEST OF ENEMIES is based on the book by Osha Gray Davidson. It features Gary Glor, Daaimah Talley, BK Dawson and Dara Lewis, and is directed by Mark Spina.

At the door admission is $28; $25 seniors and $15 students. THE BEST OF ENEMIES is part of The Theater Project’s THREE PLAYS IN THREE WEEKS series, so patrons can purchase tickets to see three different shows for $45, and two for $40. The series includes THE BEST OF ENEMIES (April 5-8), BACK CHANNEL (April 13-15) and EXIT FOLLOWED BY A BEAR (April 20-22.) Tickets: Information: 908 809-8865.

The Theater Project, now in its 24nd year, presents its main stage season at the Burgdorff Center in Maplewood. It also offers programs such as a playwright’s workshop, new play presentations, and classes for kids in Essex and Union Counties. All are on display at their web site: